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Scientific software is typically used to solve differential equations (differential equations are used to describe continuous actions or processes that depend on some other factors). Although some differential equations have relatively simple mathematical solutions, exact solutions of many differential equations are very difficult to obtain. Computers, however, can be used to obtain useful approximate solutions, particularly when a problem is split into simpler spatial or temporal parts. Nevertheless, large-scale problems often require parallel computation on supercomputers or clusters of small computers that share the work.

Scientific software couples high-performance graphics with the output of equation solvers to yield vivid displays of models of physical systems. As with spreadsheets, visualization software lets an experimenter vary initial conditions or parameters. Observing the effect of such changes can help in improving models, as well as in understanding the original system.

This category contains a wide range of high quality scientific/technical software applications for scientists, engineers, researchers, educators and other scientific and technical users.